The best damn excuse possible for a trip to The Painted Lady*. Ever.
Fat season is well and truly nigh with races at Addison Oaks, the Cadillac Pathway (POLAR BEAR EPIC, gotta love it), and pretty everywhere else over the next few weekends. The Big M Race gets the spotlight because it looks to harken back (and we’re suckers for anything that harkens in any direction) to a time when fat biking was fat biking, men were men, and women usually beat plenty of those men because they’re tougher, anyway.
The 17 mile course at Big M is going to be tall ask to race, and perhaps a taller ask to groom. The guys have been doing a killer job maintaining the trails, even with 46 feet of snow over the NYE weekend. With better conditions heading into this weekend and at least a more mile forecast into January 13, the course should be largely rock hard. Of course, it is fat biking, and you’d better pack a damn good attitude and the ability to jog a bit, just in case.
The Big M race is the first of three Great Lakes Fat Bike Series events in Michigan this year, with the Farmhand Fat Bike Race at Cannonsburg on the 27th. The YOO-PEE’s Polar Roll caps off the trifecta on February 17. If you can’t travel around all of the Midwest for cold, amateur bike racing, it would be no small challenge to try to hit these three, at the very least. Or, shit, at the very most, whatever you want to do.
The guys from Central District Cyclery are headed to Big this Saturday, January 6 for a recon ride, possibly the last chance to hit it before race day for most of us working stiffs. You can carpool, coordinate, or meet up with Mitch and the guys by RSVPing on the MyFace Event Page.
* The Painted Lady is incredible. Go to Manistee. Order a soup. Any soup. Seriously. Oh, and their broasted chicken is delicious, too. Say hi to my Uncle Chris, he’ll be there. They didn’t pay me to say this, either. Seriously.